Board the Blue Train to the world-renowned Stars of Sandstone steam and heritage festival.( Tilly Smith Dix Publicist & Writer)

Board the Blue Train and travel into the glamorous romance of yesteryear

 “We were on honeymoon and had the time of our lives, making everlasting memories.”

“We had fun with our best friends and would love to revisit in the near future.”

“Our family arrived from across the globe for a reunion and the fun never stopped while we were at Stars of Sandstone.”

These are but a sample of the thousands of comments received from visitors to the Stars of Sandstone festival that takes place in South Africa’s Eastern Free State every two years.

 The April 2019 festival promises to be one of the most spectacular to date. To cap it all and to add a new dimension to the festival, the internationally acclaimed Blue Train will travel to the festival for an unforgettable experience for visitors wishing to experience the world-renowned Stars of Sandstone in the lap of luxury.

Stars of Sandstone 2019 takes place from 4th to 14th of April 2019, and will be hosting the Blue Train from the 3rd to the 6th of April.

For more than 70 years, discerning passengers from across the planet have been pampered on the Blue Train, which enjoys top billing with luxurious international rail journeys, such as the Orient Express.


At the Stars of Sandstone festival the exhilarating atmosphere and sharing of the sheer joy of unforgettable sights, sounds and experiences of steam locomotives, vintage cars, aircraft, vintage agricultural equipment and tractors, military vehicles and the Sandstone team of 24 working Afrikaner oxen in action will make for magical memories.

The top of the range farming estate, often featured as a movie location, is complemented by its very own 30km of narrow gauge railway set in picturesque surroundings, from fields of crops and cosmos to the beautiful backdrop of the Maluti Mountains on the Lesotho border.

The Blue Train will be stationed at Vailima siding at Sandstone next to the 2ft narrow-gauge line, from where guests will be transported by complimentary shuttle to the hive of steam and heritage activities at the festival. When passengers feel the need to relax back on the train in the comfort of their own suite or sumptuous lounge, they will have the option to do so.


 The memorable 3-night, 4-day Blue Train indulgence to Stars of Sandstone 2019 comprises:

  • 07h00 check in at The Blue Train VIP Lounge at Pretoria Station. Pre-departure drinks and snacks are served after boarding. Butlers will usher you to your 5-star suite before departing for Sandstone Estates. Brunch and dinner are served in the stylish Dining Car, and High Tea is hosted in the glamorous Lounge Car. Post-dinner drinks, cognac and Cuban cigars are available prior to retiring to your plush compartment.
  • On day 2 and 3, board a Stars of Sandstone steam train after a leisurely breakfast on the Blue Train. Brunch is served in the Dining Car, whilst a special dinner will be hosted in the Waenhuis Restaurant at Sandstone Estate. You will then be taken on The Stargazer Express steam journey to savour the romantic night sky at Grootdraai. Overnight in your suite on The Blue Train, your glamorous home from home for four days.

The Blue Train has 26 suites, comprising: 23 De Luxe Suites and 3 Luxury Suites, all offering breathtaking views of the diverse South African landscape. Private en-suite bathrooms, butler service and gourmet dining, not to mention sumptuous interiors, make for an idyllic adventure.

Bookings are far advanced and more than half of the suites have already been booked with all the luxury suites have already been taken up. Book now to avoid disappointment

Contact:  Dave Richardson for fares and bookings for 

The Blue Train Stars of Sandstone 2019 journey at: – mobile +27 (0) 82447 9167 

– Landline +27 (0) 11 805 4692

Train excursions for the 2019 festival at Sandstone include:


All Images courtesy: Tilly Smith Dix Publicist & Writer & Stars of Sandstone.

  • The Mountain Wanderer offers scenic journeys at Sandstone. It traverses the full 30 km of track around the estate. Utilising up to 14 passenger coaches and two Garratt locomotives, which are former South African Railways steam locomotives, this train starts and finally ends at Hoekfontein Station. This station dates back to the 1890s and the journey takes between 90 minutes and two hours.
  • The Lesotho Meander is a short trip of about 30 minutes to Grootdraai, which is on a hill above the Lesotho border with South Africa.
  • The Stargazer is a magical evening journey departing from Grootdraai at 20h00 on selected evenings. Grootdraai is a short distance from the Lesotho Border, which is the Caledon River in the valley below. Passengers disembark at this point and observe the dazzling night sky. An astronomer provides an informative talk.
  • Seb’s Railway for children, which offers 2,48 km of fun for youngsters, steams along with a O&K locomotive built in Germany in 1930, which was refurbished after serving the Fazenda Tentativa Sugar Estate in Caxito, Angola many years ago.

 For more information on the Stars of Sandstone 2019 Steam and Heritage Festival, go to: – and watch the 2017 festival at

Stars of Sandstone 2019 bookings:

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